Types of Furnaces

When it is time to buy a new furnace, one of the biggest decisions you will need to make is choosing the type of furnace you need. There are basically four main types of furnaces available in the market: oil, natural gas, electric and propane. An electric furnace heats the air by passing it through heated elements before directing it into your home. The three other types of furnaces rely on a heating exchanger or chamber, which warms the surrounding air. These furnaces can be turned on and off by a thermostat.

Natural Gas Furnaces

Your HVAC contractor will tell you right away that a gas furnace is the most economical option on the market. This is particularly so because natural gas is cheaper than any other type of fuel. Natural gas is also readily available. Nearly half the country uses natural gas as an energy source.

Although the older gas furnaces had an average efficiency of 65%, modern-day gas furnaces can be up to 98% efficient. As a result of this, gas furnaces are the most popular furnaces used in heating homes.

Oil Furnaces

When compared to natural gas, oil furnaces are a tad less efficient. On average, they have an efficiency of between 80% and 90%. All the same, the upfront costs of buying an oil furnace are much lower than those of a gas furnace. As a matter of fact, natural gas furnaces cost up to 25% more to buy than oil furnaces.

Oil furnaces are ideal for remote areas. If you live in a remote area where natural gas is not readily accessible, an oil furnace will make more sense. This is because the oil can easily be stored onsite in tanks.

Electric Furnace

These are the cheapest furnaces you can buy. It is not uncommon to find an electric furnace that costs half the cost of a gas furnace. What is even better is the fact that they are much easier to install. They also have a long lifespan of more than 10 years. Electric furnaces have also been found to be almost 100% efficient. However, these furnaces have a major downside – high running costs. The cost of electricity is much higher than the cost of gas. You will end up paying more in your monthly energy bill when using an electric furnace than you would with a gas furnace.

Propane Furnace

Propane is the byproduct of gas and oil production. It is easy to store in tanks. If gas and oil are not readily available in your region, propane furnaces are the best alternative.

Even with the knowledge of the types of furnaces in mind, choosing the right furnace is still not a walk in the park. There are so many considerations that have to be made, such as the size of your home, prevailing climate and your home’s insulation. Reading furnace reviews on various brands and working with an expert in HVAC Toronto will help you find the furnace that is perfect for your needs. Reading up on frequently asked questions will further give you some insight into the best furnace to buy.

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